Top Gunsmithing Schools in the United States

Gunsmithing is the trade of building, designing, modifying, and repairing firearms. Gunsmiths need to possess a wide variety of skills, including those of a metalworker, a mechanic, a woodworker, as well as an artisan. Gunsmithing as a trade is extremely precise, and requires the mastery of a wide breadth of subject matter.

Click here to see a list of gunsmithing programs in your area, as well as online gunsmithing schools.

Below are a listing of some of the top gunsmithing programs in the country. For distance/online gunsmithing programs, scroll below.

1. Trinidad State Junior College, Colorado

TSJC campus (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
TSJC campus (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The gunsmithing program at Trinidad State Junior College is the oldest gunsmithing program in the United States. The program was originally started by master gunsmith Parker Otto Ackley, who set up the program at Trinidad State Junior College in 1947 due to the incredible demand from World War 2 veterans.

TSJC now boasts the oldest, largest, and perhaps the best gunsmithing school in the country. The 2 year degree program trains individuals in the basic and advanced skills and knowledge they will need in order to pursue careers as professional gunsmiths. In addition to basic coursework covering machining, bench metal, gun repair, and stockmaking, the program also offers a wide range of specialty courses, allowing students to hone in on specific areas of expertise.

2. Yavapai College, Arizona

Photo credit:
YC gunsmithing student working in the shop (Photo credit:

Yovapai College is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and offers both a journeyman certificate, as well as an associate’s degree in gunsmithing. The Yavapai gunsmithing school college is one of the very best gunsmithing programs in the country.

During the first year of the program, students will take courses in machine shop, stockmaking, rifle theory, metal finishing, shotguns, and handguns. The 2nd year will include courses in advanced machining, rifle rebarreling, advanced courses in handguns and shotguns, as well as a practical semester designed to give students real-world experience. During this final semester, students choose special interest projects in order to demonstrate and apply their knowledge.

Located in Prescott, Arizona, the college is surrounded by National Forest, giving students ample opportunity to pursue their love for outdoor activities, including hunting and fishing, as they work towards their 2 year degree. Prescott is also home to a number of sport shooting ranges and nationally-regarded firearm businesses.

3. Piedmont Technical College, South Carolina

Photo credit:
Program coordinator Bob Koster (Photo credit:

Piedmont Technical College offers both an intro to gunsmithing certificate as well as an advanced gunsmithing certificate, and is the only program of its kind in South Carolina.

The introductory certification introduces aspiring gunsmiths to the basics of hand tools, reading blueprints and schematics, operating machine tools, and general gunsmithing terminology. Tuition for the 8 month introductory certificate program is $3,564 for the 2012-2013 school year, plus an additional $2,211 for supplies and books.

The advanced certificate builds on the knowledge and skills developed in the introductory certificate. The advanced program exposes students to actual real-world projects in gun construction and repair. Tuition and fees for the 8 month program are$3,864, plus an additional $3,300 for supplies and books. Upon completing the program, students will have all the skills and experience required to begin a career as a professional gunsmith.

Listing Of The Top Gunsmithing Schools In The U.S.

School Enrollment Address Phone Number
Trinidad State Junior College 1,812 600 Prospect St., Trinidad, Colorado 81082 (719) 846-5011
Yavapai College 8,276 1100 E. Sheldon St., Prescott, Arizona 86301 (928) 445-7300
Piedmont Technical College 5,566 620 North Emerald Rd., Greenwood, South Carolina 29646 (864) 941-8324
Piedmont Community College 2,874 1715 College Dr., Roxboro, North Carolina 27573 (336) 599-1181 x221
Murray State College 2,604 One Murray Campus, Tishomingo, Oklahoma 73460 (580) 371-2371

Click here if you want to see a list of gunsmithing programs in your area, or find online gunsmithing programs you can complete through distance education.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *